Roadworthiness could help lower insurance premiums

By Staff Writer

While the recently proposed speed limit reductions and increased legal drinking age can potentially  reduce the cost of insurance premiums for consumers, Wilhelm von La Chevallerie, Director at CIB Insurance Administrators, says that additional factors, such as vehicle roadworthiness and the quality of drivers’ skills also need to be considered in order to make South Africa’s roads safer.

According to recent reports, vehicle accidents cost the South African economy more than R56 billion a year. Von La Chevallerie says it appears that these financial statistics are forcing government to reconsider speed limits and the legal drinking age. “The slogan, ‘Speed Kills’, is definitely true, when considering the reduced reaction time a driver travelling at high speed has in the event of an accident. The increased severity of the accident due to higher speeds also often results in innocent road users being affected.”

In order to effectively reduce the cost of insurance premiums and increase road safety, he says that additional road regulations need to be put in place. “While we acknowledge that recent proposed initiatives, such as the lowering of speed limits and raising the minimum drinking age, are recognising the importance of road safety, we believe that the quality of vehicles on the road and the capability of drivers are equally important issues that need to be addressed.”

The Retail Motor Industry Association recently revealed that 45% of vehicles on South African roads are older than 10 years, and that many of these vehicles are not properly maintained, making them a hazard on the road.

Von La Chevallerie says that assessing vehicle roadworthiness is fundamental to reducing the number of accidents on the roads. More than 20 000 un-roadworthy vehicles, including several buses and mini-bus taxis, were discontinued from use between October and December 2010.

He says that mandatory periodic testing should be introduced for vehicles that are older than five years. “This would not only decrease the amount of accidents on the roads, but also potentially lower insurance premiums for those who have their vehicles inspected.”

He says that in order to reduce accidents on the roads, road users’ driving abilities also need to improve. “South African driving license tests are still very slack when compared to European countries. For example, in order to qualify for a driver’s license in Germany, the driver needs to accumulate a minimum of 25-45 hours of professional driving instruction, including night-driving, driving on high-ways and in-town, as well as 12 hours of theory.”

Von La Chevallerie says that in order to make an impact on the roads, we need to look collectively at the current issues. “Merely reducing the speed limit will not make enough of a difference, but considering all of the issues will definitely have an effect. Motorists should remember that the more safety precautions that are taken, the lower their chances of having an accident, which eventually should translate into safer roads and lower insurance premiums.”

Recent Articles

Featured More than just selling – being an entrepreneur at a market

It only takes a couple of seconds for Sheryl Ozinsky, co-founder of the Oranjezicht City Farm (OZCF) Market, to tell whether an entrepreneur will succeed as a local trader. By looking at their body language, she immediately gets a sense of whether they’re going to engage well with their clients and handle the demands of trading at a market.

Read more

22seven: Worth a try?

We live in an era where there is an app for everything. From monitoring your heart rate and menstrual cycle to tracking your sleeping habits and your monthly budget. While this may seem invasive being made aware of your spending habits and where you may be overstepping your budget, it is the best way to rectify and cultivate better financial health.

Read more

My two cents on the Nedbank MobiMoney account

In November last year Nedbank, launched a mobile account called MobiMoney. This account is similar to one of its existing accounts called Send Imali.  However, it’s not only limited to existing Nedbank clients. 

Read more

The cost of being sick in South Africa

Finding affordable healthcare in South Africa is possible, but it comes with its own challenges. Justmoney contacted 13 doctors in Cape Town to find out how much an appointment costs. We also found out how medical schemes assist with these costs, and we compared South Africa with its BRICS counterparts.

Read more

Sign Up

To our weekly newsletter for advice you can bank on

Deals

Obz Cafe Cocktail Special

Price: R55-R59
When: Tuesdays-Fridays
Where: Cape Town

Telkom January Big Deal

Price: R807 pm
When: Until 31 January
Where: Nationwide

Planet Fitness Special

Price: R199
When: Daily
Where: Nationwide